The ECOWAS Commission in the framework of the ECOWAS Peace and Security Architecture and Operations (EPSAO) Project, says it has planned to hold its West Africa Peace and Security Innovation (WAPSI) Forum from the 9th-10th March 2022, virtually.
The forum will be co-funded by the European Union and the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and implemented with the support of the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ GmbH),
The WAPSI forum is a platform designed by the ECOWAS Commission to further community engagement, facilitate cutting-edge research and foster the dissemination, knowledge sharing on best practices and innovative solutions to the emerging challenges to human security in the ECOWAS region.
The Covid 19 pandemic had a significant socio-economic effect and impacted greatly on governance, peace, and security in the ECOWAS region beyond the loss of human lives. While the immediate health problems associated with the COVID-19 pandemic are being researched and discussed widely, the overall impact of the virus on human security in West Africa has not been systematically and comprehensively researched and explored.
It is against this background that ECOWAS commission is dedicating this first WAPSI Forum to discuss the broad range of complex and multi-dimensional challenges induced by the virus in the ECOWAS region.
Pandemics like COVID-19 and Ebola may recur in the future, it is, therefore, important to assess the response mechanisms including the tech-based responses employed by citizens, civil society organizations (CSOs), ECOWAS member states, ECOWAS Commission, and the AU to mitigate the impact of the pandemic to inform future interventions. Particularly, for ECOWAS, the devastating regional impact of the pandemic calls for an interrogation of its institutional capacity to respond to the emerging threats to human security, especially the implementation of the ECOWAS Conflict Prevention Framework (ECPF) as well as the opportunities that exist to address its institutional weakness.
The upcoming WAPSI Forum will interrogate the findings of the research report compiled by the West Africa Network for Peacebuilding (WANEP). These sessions shall explore approaches, and lessons learned from managing regional peace and security matters amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. The Forum will also provide an opportunity to conduct a critical analysis of the current political dynamics especially on the resurgence of coups d’État in some Member States in the regions against the background of the pandemic and proffer recommendations in support of ECOWAS interventions.
The WAPSI forum is designed to be an annual event with over 1000 participants meeting online, including high profile personalities from governments, civil society, scholars, social entrepreneurs, and members of the private sector from the region. https://thenewdawnliberia.com/ecowas-commissions-conflict-prevention-focal-persons/